βII-spectrin promotes mouse brain connectivity through stabilizing axonal plasma membranes and enabling axonal organelle transport.
βII-spectrin is the generally expressed member of the β-spectrin family of elongated polypeptides that form micrometer-scale networks associated with plasma membranes. We addressed in vivo functions of βII-spectrin in neurons by knockout of βII-spectrin in mouse neural progenitors. βII-spectrin deficiency caused severe defects in long-range axonal connectivity and axonal degeneration. βII-spectrin-null neurons exhibited reduced axon growth, loss of actin-spectrin-based periodic membrane skeleton, and impaired bidirectional axonal transport of synaptic cargo. We found that βII-spectrin associates with KIF3A, KIF5B, KIF1A, and dynactin, implicating spectrin in the coupling of motors and synaptic cargo. βII-spectrin required phosphoinositide lipid binding to promote axonal transport and restore axon growth. Knockout of ankyrin-B (AnkB), a βII-spectrin partner, primarily impaired retrograde organelle transport, while double knockout of βII-spectrin and AnkB nearly eliminated transport. Thus, βII-spectrin promotes both axon growth and axon stability through establishing the actin-spectrin-based membrane-associated periodic skeleton as well as enabling axonal transport of synaptic cargo.
Lorenzo, DN; Badea, A; Zhou, R; Mohler, PJ; Zhuang, X; Bennett, V
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